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School board honors Providence teacher, passes concussion policy

September 16th, 2011 Posted in Opinion

By Allee Evensen

LOGAN — Standing in front of a sparsely populated room in the Cache County Board of Education building Thursday, Kim Mills sported an ear-to-ear grin as she was presented a Teacher of the Year award.

Mills, who is in her third year of teaching at Providence Elementary school, was described to the board as having gone above and beyond to help her students gain an education and never letting a teaching moment pass by.

“Not only did I encounter a teacher with passion beyond anything I had ever experienced, but a knowledge and energy that would be life changing for my daughter and her eager students,” a former student’s parent said in a letter that was read at the meeting. “She taught them that they were loved, that that they were intelligent, with endless potential.”

“I cannot thing think of a finer district to be in,” Mills said. “It’s an honor… I’m completely humbled.”

Later in the meeting, the board made a quick and unanimous vote to pass a policy on amateur sports concussions and head injuries. The policy recognizes concussions as risks students may encounter, and puts responsibility on staff and coaches who supervise the students to recognize and treat injuries appropriately. The policy went into effect retroactively, meaning all students involved in physical-based activities in the school district, including amateur sports and physical education, must have the policy signed before they can continue to participate.

The policy comes in response to a bill passed by the Utah Legislature last spring. House Bill 204 required all amateur sports organizations and school sponsored clubs and activities involving athletic events to adopt and enforce a concussion and head injury policy by Sept. 15. The proposal was reviewed at the school board’s study session Sept. 7, and modified slightly to fit the board’s goals before being passed on Sept. 15.

“What this policy does really is reflect a practice that is already taking place,” said Kirk McRae, the district’s director of human resources. “This formalizes what our policy already is.”

In other business, Sky View High School presented six new student clubs at the board meeting. Set to be officially approved at the next board meeting, the clubs included the American Sign Language club, the British club, the creative arts club, the juggling club, the racquetball club, and the dueling club. Assistant Vice Principal Joel L. Allred said that Sky View has an extremely active extracurricular program, with around 90 percent of the student body involved with at least one activity.

“They’re really excited to get going,” Allred said. “They are fun organizations with these kids.”


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